XTC

English Settlement

  • AllMusic Rating
    8
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Several new instruments within the band -- Dave Gregory's Rickenbacker 12-string, Andy Partridge's new acoustic guitar, and Terry Chambers' new drum synthesizer, along with Colin Moulding's fretless bass -- set the tone for English Settlement, an album that moved away from the pop gloss of Black Sea in favor of light, though still rhythmically heavy, acoustic numbers with more complex and intricate instrumentation. There are plenty of pop gems -- "Senses Working Overtime" stands as one of their finest songs -- but the main focus seems to be the more expansive sound; most of the songs are drawn out to near-epic length, ultimately taking away some of the songs' impact. Despite several terrific tracks, English Settlement seems more a transitional album than anything else, although the textural sound of the album is quite remarkable, indicating the direction they would take in their post-touring incarnation.

blue highlight denotes track pick